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Spanish Syndication ‘Opportunistic’ After Auctions, WestLB Says

Spain’s decision to sell 10-year bonds through banks in place of scheduled auctions this week represents an effort to capture lower yields after successful debt sales in the region last week, WestLB AG said.

“Spain has a lot of issuance to do in 2011 and they want to secure as much funding as soon as possible in January,” said Michael Leister, a fixed-income analyst at WestLB AG in Dusseldorf, Germany. The timing is “opportunistic” after the nation held successful auctions last week with Portugal and Italy, he said.

Spain’s syndicated offering will be a similar size to a sale last January, a finance ministry official said, when the Treasury sold 5 billion euros ($6.6 billion) of bonds.

“Doing auctions on top of that would stretch it too far,” Leister said. “This is a significant amount for the market to digest. It’s likely to drag on Spanish paper.”

Spanish 10-year bonds slipped, pushing the yield up two basis points to 5.39 percent at 10:35 a.m. in London.

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